Daniel Handler’s Why We Broke Up (December, Little, Brown) is, hands-down, one of my favorite YA novels of the season. It’s written as Min Green’s epic, no-punches-pulled breakup note to Ed Slaterton, intended to accompany a box she’s going to leave on his doorstep. Each object (illustrated by Maira Kalman) in the box was collected during Min and Ed’s relationship and represents an experience or moment of their love—and its disintegration. Min is both unique and completely relatable, making her an ideal voice for post-breakup emotions that you and I, and nearly everyone, everywhere have felt.
This universality of heartache inspires Handler not only in this novel, but also on his related blog, The Why We Broke Up Project, which asks for personal stories from his audience, including famous authors. (One of my favorites is Brian Selznick’s: “I knew I had to break up with Ann Rosenberg after she chose a teal dress for the prom. I had never heard of teal. Also, I was gay.”) There’s even a section on the blog where Handler hilariously and cleverly responds to some of the readers’ experiences.
The breakup testimonials are varied—some funny, others sad—but you and I, and everyone, everywhere who’s been through one will appreciate their honesty and insight. Join this catharsis-party to share your pain, be soothed and entertained by others’, and start the countdown until the novel’s December 27 release.